Date: Sun, 8 Mar 1998 15:14:13 EST
Subject: Tom Clark, ADS, and ACLS

Tom Clark was a great leader, friend, and scholar. He had wide interests and
saw connections that others missed. I had the particular privilege to observe
him from close up as a leader.
He was an involved, genial, and astute vice president and then president of
ADS in the 1980s. Later, from 1988 to 1991, he served an impressive term as
ADS delegate to the American Council of Learned Societies, the consortium to
which ADS belongs. Until his time, the Delegate's role had been largely
ceremonial: attending the annual meeting of ACLS, voting to approve the budget
drawn up by the ACLS staff in New York, listening to talks by distinguished
scholars, partaking of good food and drink. Tom did not shrink from these
responsibilities, but he was not content with them either. At his initiative,
he was appointed to the small Executive Committee of the Delegates. From
there, throughout his four-year term, he worked with other delegates and with
ACLS President Stan Katz to make the Delegates more active and useful. As our
current Delegate (Richard Bailey) can attest, the position of Delegate now has
some substance to it, both in the review of ACLS headquarters activity and in
the overview of scholarship in the humanities.
It was a particular pleasure for me when Tom attended a fall meeting of the
Conference of Administrative Officers of ACLS. There he was an able and
congenial spokesman for the Delegates of more than fifty learned societies.
It was a pleasure, also, that his wife Jeanne could be with him on that
trip. And that reminds me of the magnificent hospitality he and Jeanne
displayed to Donna and me, and to everyone who attended his Las Vegas meeting
of the Dictionary Society of North America in May 1993. Whether it was
hospitality at their beautiful home, a ride in his convertible down the Strip,
or a group photo by the giant flashlight, we will never forget the congenial
collegiality that they imparted to every moment of that meeting.
Tom's books will be read and appreciated for years to come. I regret that
new readers won't be able to appreciate first hand the wonderful man who
created them.
- Allan Metcalf